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    Description

    1912 Half Eagle, PR66
    Rare Matte Proof Date

    1912 $5 PR66 PCGS Secure. CAC. Among pre-1950 coinages, few runs of dates are so consistently well-preserved as the matte proofs from 1911 through 1915. When the gold matte proofs made their debut in 1908, reaction was split. A "hard core" of dedicated numismatists, likely aware of the European trends toward matte finishes that focused attention on the design by eliminating such "distractions" as mirrored fields, praised this change in finish, while another cadre of the Mint's regular proof customers, used to the gleam of silver and gold, found the matte proofs a dull and inexplicable change of direction.

    Two years of experimentation with a half-bright, half-satin finish called "Roman gold" pleased neither side in the debate, and from 1911 on the Mint stuck to a sandblast finish, sometimes fine-grained, sometimes coarse, but always sticking to the theory of avoiding distractions and focusing on the design itself. The mirror-proof-loving crowd had fallen away by this point, and only the aforementioned "hard core" of collectors were left, who by-and-large took great care of their coins. This explains the relatively high proportion of Gem-and-better survivors for the matte proofs in that five-year span.

    This 1912 half eagle was kept carefully for the first century of its existence, today residing in PCGS plastic that labels it a Premium Gem. The striking qualities and the yellow-orange surfaces both are remarkable, though the latter shows a few lighter, shinier areas. A tiny copper spot to the right of star 3 on the obverse may serve as a future pedigree marker.
    From A 1912 Gold Proof Set Acquired Directly From The Mint.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 28E6, PCGS# 8543)

    Weight: 8.36 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper


    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

    View all of [A 1912 Gold Proof Set Acquired Directly From The Mint and Other Items ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2013
    25th-29th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 13
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,072

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